March 9, 2021

March 9, 2021

Propagation co-owners and wives Heather Hoffman and Lauren Nguyen. Photo courtesy of Propagation.

The pandemic has been particularly brutal on our local bar scene, but you gotta love that hope really does spring eternal, and in this case, it’s a plant-loving bar called ~PROPAGATION~, opening in the former Tonic’s second location (on Post) in Lower Nob Hill. Co-owners Heather Hoffman (an SF bartender of 15 years: Ruby Skye, Jones, Public Works, and her own Raise the Bar cocktail catering and consultancy) and her wife Lauren Nguyen (a designer: R3 Design and bona fide plant lover) are creating a neighborhood-friendly hangout, one that’s a bit grown-up, but not too too. Plants will abound, from the tropical troughs o’ plants in their outdoor Shared Space to the leafy wallpaper in the well-appointed bathrooms. There will also be nice lighting and lots of custom touches.

The list of playful and some garden-centric cocktails (think: salad in your glass!) are designed to be delicious but not super-serious, like an açai-and-Champagne piña colada, a red snapper (like a Bloody Mary, but with gin—and you can get a mini snap so you don’t get too full), and a pistachio cream-topped Irish cold brew (sign me up). There will be wines by the glass and on tap (like The Day Project, which also raises money for various causes) and Heather mentions they will always have a beer on tap from Standard Deviant. There will also be cold brew from Ikon Roastery, Lev’s Kombucha, and a variety of pop-ups supplying bites, starting with their friends at Papito Hayes (they’re excited to be able to support the local community and friends).

They hope to get final sign-off from the Health Department to open next week in time for St. Patrick’s Day, so let’s find a lucky clover for them. Otherwise, they’ll be open when they can open Thu-Sun 2pm-2am—they want to be able to provide a space for people to hang out in the afternoon (a 2pm happy hour is coming!) and late for folx getting off work who have nowhere to hang out in our current ghost town. I will post on Instagram as soon as they’re open, otherwise, give these lady bar owners a follow at @propagationsf and cheers to that! 895 Post St. at Hyde.


The bar at Kona’s Street Market. Photo courtesy of KSM.

In one of the more resilient stories of the year, bar owner Kevin Diedrich still managed to open his new bar project, ~KONA’S STREET MARKET~ just days after a devastating electrical fire at his other bar, Pacific Cocktail Haven (PCH). When I saw the opening on Instagram, I was like, “Whuuuuuuut, this guy!” He’s working with Brian Means at KSM, collaborating with Sidecar Hospitality (the team behind Schroeder’s restaurant, the Press Club, and PCH.) You can read more backstory in this SFGATE piece if you are so inclined.

The cocktails are inspired by street markets from all around the world (Europe, Middle East-Africa, Americas, and Asia-Pacific), with international ingredients and spirits to match, like the Hard to Say Dubai (Wyoming whiskey, apple brandy, Montenegro, prickly pear, citrus, absinthe, bitters), Save Me a Piece of That Corn! (Espolon Blanco tequila, falernum, Averna, atole de elote, horchata), and the Nippon Cooler (Toki Japanese whisky, aloe, watermelon, osmanthus, citrus, bitters, soda).

For now, there are a limited number of sidewalk seats, available only by reservation, and cocktails will also be available to-go. KSM is open Tue-Sat 3pm-7pm. 32 3rd St. at Stevenson.